Eli Roth Joins Tarantino War Flick "Inglorious Bastards"

As Quentin Tarantino's years-in-the-talking World War II epic Inglorious Bastards (or "Inglourious Basterds", as he spelled it on his screenplay) is finally—finally!—going into production, casting whispers have been going off far and wild. Big names were thrown around, including Brad Pitt and Leonardo DiCaprio. Not the names that are usually QT's style of casting. As it turns out, the latest cast member for the film is not a very surprising pick: Hostel helmer and Tarantino's favorite son Eli Roth.

Inglorious Bastards tells the tale of a small guerilla team dropped smack dab in the middle of Nazi-infested France before the arrival of the Allied armada to kill them some Nazis. The "heroes" consist of tough guy Lt. Aldo Raine and his team of eight Nazi-hating American Jews looking for Aryan blood. Tarantino's been noted as a fan of Marvel's Sgt. Fury and the Howling Commandos war comics, and you can see a bit of that influence here.

Roth is playing Sgt. Donie Donowitz, a vicious Jew who likes to kill Nazis with a baseball bat. Roth is buddy-buddy with Tarantino, of course, and he'd already cast him once in Death Proof, so the fact that he's involved is not at all strange; What's unusual is the role he's taking. In the script, Donowitz is nicknamed "The Bear Jew," feared by Nazis and believed to be a Golem conjured up by a vengeful Rabbi to punish the Aryans. Tell me, does that scream "Eli Roth" to you? I like Eli Roth, honest, but I've met the guy a couple of times. He's really more of a "Deer Jew."

Other names thrown in the hat: Brad Pitt is in talks to play Aldo Raine. Leonardo DiCaprio was supposed to play the lead villain but Tarantino at the last minute decided to go with a German actor instead. Corey Feldman, who QT's a big fan of and had wanted to work with for years, might join as one of the Bastards. Also, when this project was still talked about years ago, Tarantino was talking about giving one of the parts to Adam Sandler, but who knows if that's still the case. QT's supposed to be announcing his finalized cast very soon, so stay tuned.

Aug
06
2008
Arya Ponto • Contributor

As former Editor of JPP, Arya likes to entertain peeps with his thoughts on pop culture, when he's not busy watching Battle Royale for the 200th time. He lives in Brooklyn with a comic book collection that's always the most daunting thing to move with, and writes for Artboiled.com.

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